The former HMNZS Canterbury has been scuttled as the Bay of Islands’ newest tourist attraction and now lies under about 30m of water in Deep Water Cove. The resulting artificial reef is expected to boost tourism by 15-20 per cent and become a divers’ playground.
The Bay of Islands Canterbury Trust spent close to $700,000 on the scuttling.
The engine room, galley and shell room had previously been carefully flooded and holes had been cut into its sides. This ensured that the explosives imported from the United States would cause as little damage as possible to the frigate as it sank to the sea floor.
Deep Water Cove is a feature of the Cape Brett Peninsula, which forms the southern arm of the Bay of Islands, and is about 28 km by sea from Opua.